Wednesday, January 7, 2009

To keep or not to keep...

...the resolvements, that is.

So, as I was lying in my bed last night thinking some more about my new year's resolutions, I wondered about whether or not I could/would actually keep them. I'd like to, of course, and I think the problem generally is that resolutions are either

1) too unsavory
2) too vague
3) too un-documentable

to be kept. So, in all of the brilliance that is the moments right before falling asleep, I came up with a plan to document my resolution keeping.

Warning: we are going into serious nerd territory.

So, you remember when you were a kid and you had a list on the fridge of all of your chores or whatever, and then every time you did a chore, your mom put up a gold star and then when you had enough stars you got your allowance? Or something? I don't. What I do remember is trying to implement a system similar to this one at least quarterly from the time I was maybe 8 until I was 12 or 13. The problem was not with me. It was with my mother, who just couldn't be bothered to put up a freaking foil star next to my (albeit meager) accomplishments, or to care at all except whether the bathroom had been cleaned or not. Also, for all of my efforts for a system of (what I believed to be more than fair) compensation for hard work, I maybe got an allowance once. Maybe.

Which brings me to the present day list of New Year's Resolutions. I've condensed them down to the really important, actionable ones:

1. No douchebags
2. No smoking
3. Exercise
4. Write
5. Once a week fun

My goals for exercise and writing are 3 times per week each. Exercise only counts if I'm in proper exercise attire and actually exercising on purpose (so, not walking around the block at lunch), generally at the gym. Writing is defined as FICTION writing, so blogging and journaling, which I will continue to do, do not count towards the three times a week (since I tend to use blogging and journaling as excuses not to write fiction).

Now, what if, every day that I do one of these things, I write the corresponding number in the corner of that day in my datebook? So, say, a day when I exercise and don't smoke and avoid douchebags, is a 1,2,3. And a day when I don't smoke and I write, and I avoid douchebags is a 1,2,4. And so on. And that way, I can have visible proof to myself that I'm doing what i said I wanted to do, while keeping it at the top of my mind by writing it down every day.

So Far!
Monday: 1,2,3
Tuesday: 1,2,4

I really don't know if this is going to do any good, and I haven't gotten to the rewards part of this yet, as monetary rewards don't really motivate me, nor do buying myself presents, so...suggestions welcome!

Happy New Year's Resolutions keeping. What are your resolutions? How are you planning on keeping them? Or do you think resolutions are stupid?


Okie said...

This is good. You should reward yourself with an event. Going to see Derrick C. Brown (he's coming to town soon, may already be here), or going to museum, or buying a kick ass gyro, or a trip to the top of the empire state building (cheesy, but very cool), or anything else you wouldn't normally do in an average week.

Rona said...

That's a great idea! Last year, I set 'goals' for the year instead of resolutions: buy fresh flowers once a week, send birthday cards every month, write four letters by hand and mail them, paint three terrible watercolors, visit wine country six times. They were all very attainable and it motivated me to do things I always MEAN to do, but never make it around to. So I LOVE what you're doing with yours.

That reminds me...I need to write this year's. Shoot. Goal 1: write New Year's Goals before February.